The technical answer to what
alignment is, is essentially trying to marry up the organisational objectives,
the business culture, the processes together with the values of your
organisation. That’s essentially what alignment is. The most simple way that I
can explain is that it’s making sure that everyone’s on the same page. Now an
organisation that lacks alignment will have a different idea in terms of if you
spoke to different people that all say different things about what the
organisation stands for, what it does, who their patients are. If you don’t have
alignment you’re going to struggle to meet your business goals. One thing that
I find to be really helpful is to interview all of the main
decision-makers in a practice and ask them what they think the practice stands
for, who are the patients that they’d like to see, what does the practice offer,
what is its most important selling point to a patient, if I was a patient why
would I want to come back and I guess the most important thing is that you
get consistent answers from people. You can’t expect they’re all going to be
consistent all the way through but as long as you’ve got some elements of
consistency on the main points you’re a much better chance of making sure that
your alignments right. The interview process is great when you’re speaking to the
people but you’ve also got to make sure they live these things and they’re
not just answers they might give you in that process. So, I try and speak to these
people and say do you think your views are aligned with others, do other
people think the same way? Not in terms of everyone being a robot, just in terms
of everyone understanding what the value proposition is of a practice and how
they demonstrate that. I often hear about practitioners leaving practices where
they say the fit just wasn’t right. I actually think this is evidence of
alignment lacking in terms of their experience with the previous
practice and any good practice that I know has a nice consistent stable area
of doctors being in place and seeing patients and those the practices that I
see that are worth the most.